The Media Booth


Picture of Adeeb Farhat
Adeeb Farhat
Head of Production


Find a comfortable place, that your subjects feel safe, and comfortable in. comfortable furniture and lighting and temperature is a must.
Make their hands comfortable, as silly as it sounds, help your subject deal with their hands positioning because if it is not dealt with, it will distract them when filming.
Communicate with you subject, ask them how they like to sit, and where. ask them about activities they do so you can film them as B-rolls.
Ask your subjects to be themselves, and tell them that they do not need to be nervous, if they made a mistake during the interview, they can repeat their whole sentence.
Show genuine interest in what your subject is saying, keep eye contact but not too much eye contact. head nods make your subject feel that you get them.
Be careful of how you are sitting while doing the interview, you do not want to look bored or judging.
Respect your subject, whether it’s by arriving on time and telling them how much time is needed, or by explaining the technical process.
Do not look at your phone while your subject is talking, unless it’s to read notes about the interview, and if so, tell your subject why you are looking at the phone.
Do not hesitate to ask questions even when you are not rolling, it will give you ideas about new things to film and new content to tackle.
Create a bond with your subject, the human connection you connect is most important, you never know when you will meet them again, or if you will ever have to film with them again.
Life is short so leave a good impression.
Talk to your subjects about the goal of the video, the purpose of the project and make them feel that they and the story they are sharing is important.
Tell your subject about the vision of the video technically, they might have useful input as a viewer and a story element.
When recalling incidents, don’t ask people to tell you what happened, ask them to tell you what they felt and what went through their mind when it happened.
Ask “Why” questions, these questions tend to make people think about topics and relive previous incidents.
Practice pauses during the interviews, pausing during listening to your subject makes them keep talking, yes sometime it might be weird but your subject will understand that you are processing the content they gave or preparing for the next questions.
Do not hesitate to make a pre-interview call, it will make you establish a relation with your subjects and make them comfortable when you actually meet for filming, it will also give you a sense of what your interview will be about.


Choose the right crew, a crew that shares your vision and commitment and who is efficient on set.
Do your test shots on someone from your crew (stand in), and give time for your reporter or director to discuss the content with your subject.


Use sliders or gimbals to create some interesting motion, but too much motion might be disturbing and out of subject.
Use the 180 degrees rule for interviews with a host.
Use the rule of thirds but do not be afraid to break rules.
Pay attention to the background, feel free to jump in and change things in the background.
Ask your subjects to repeat your question when they respond, in many cases you will not use your voice or your question, so make sure you get a complete answer.
Focus in emotions more than information.


Off camera interviews, they are interviews which the subject or character does not talk with the camera. They are talking with another character in the frame who is usually part of the story.
In the moment, its interviews that are done as part of a scene, in action or when our subject is preforming some kind of action. Example: a photographer during his photoshoot or a builder during his construction work.
Talking head, they are classic interviews where our subjects look right off to the camera to the director or reporter, usually its more about recalling a story or an event.
Such interviews need a lot of preparation because you have to get the person in the right place.
Talking heads can be hand held or multi camera with another camera filming close ups.
Centered talking head, it’s an interview with your subject is in the middle of the frame talking directly to the camera as if it’s the audience, this is usually done in cases where the subject is delivering a message or in cases where graphics might be added later.
Voiceover, its where you hear the voice but do not see an actual face.


Remind your subject that they can stop at any time, and that they control their story and content.
Introduce the crew before you start filming.
Introduce the camera slowly, make them understand the process and absorbed the pressure.
The placement of the camera and equipment must make the subject as comfortable as possible.
Prepare everything technical before you start filming, you do not make people nervous while you test things and move things around the set.
Keep talking to your subject, make them trust you and feel that you care about them.
Avoid language that shames, blames, or hurts your subject.
Asking about the time of a rape incident or place or what they were wearing might imply that they had control over the incident.
Ask your subject what they want to be referred to as: a victim or a survivor, it’s important that they establish you they want to be in your story.
The subject owns the story, they do not have to tell you everything or give you all the details.
Listen and understand when you need give the subject time to recollect themselves, and keep an eye for non-verbal cues (Tears, shivering, choking) this means you need to take a break.
Never pity the subject, respect them and talk to them about their bravery for talking about what happened.
About all, treat them with honor and dignity.

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